You might think tht the only way to save money at the store is to clip coupons from the Sunday paper or sign-up for a retailer’s e-mail list.
That’s far from the case. There are plenty of coupon apps that can save you money on just about any purchase.
Top Coupon Apps
To help you save the most money when shopping, here are the details of the most popular coupon apps.
Ebates is more than just a coupon app. It allows you to get a small percentage back for your entire purchases ranging from 1% to 40% depending on the retailer, although the average cash back rate is usually between 3% and 10%.
Over 2,000 online retailers participate ranging from Wal-Mart, Target, Lowe’s, JC Penney, Macy’s, and many clothing brands. Basically, if you can buy it online, you can get cash back.
By linking your credit card to your Ebates account, you can also get cash back at over 30 stores when you shop in person.
You do have to initiate the shopping session on the app before checkout, but, you don’t have to send a copy of your receipt.
They also have a discount code section on the Ebates website with various codes you can enter at checkout to lower your total sales amount. Rewards are paid by check on a quarterly basis once you earn $5 cash back.
It’s free to join & you also have the opportunity to earn a $10 bonus credit.
2. Ibotta App
Another popular app is Ibotta. Many people consider Ibotta the best coupon app for saving money on groceries and in-person shopping. This is more like your traditional approach to couponing.
Before going to a store, search the Ibotta app on your smartphone to see what deals there are and activate the digital coupons.
For example, you might be able to get $1 back by buying a particular brand of potato chips or bottled water. You activate the coupon, purchase the product, and receive a cash back credit in your Ibotta account.
Coupons are also available for all groceries regardless of brand. You might have the opportunity to save 50 cents on a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread. And, there are also coupons for non-grocery items such as clothing stores, restaurants, and even gas stations after scanning the copy of your receipt with a smartphone.
After earning $20 in rewards you can be paid with PayPal or store gift cards. New customers can also receive a $10 bonus by signing up here.
If you shop on Amazon, you have realized there are very few ways to get discounts. Honey makes it a little bit easier as this coupon app automatically enters every known discount code on the checkout screen to save you money.
And, it can even show you the lowest prices while shopping on Amazon.
Along with saving money at Amazon, Honey will also enter the best discount codes at most major discount retailers, department stores, and restaurants (including online pizza orders)!
SavingStar is a coupon app to help you save money at grocery stores with over 100 participating retail chains and 7 million users. You can save money on select grocery items by activating the offer before you checkout.
Some stores allow you to link your loyalty card to your SavingStar account and other stores (without loyalty cards) require a photo of your receipt.
You might also like SavingStar because they periodically offer additional cash rewards with their “One or Many” offers for reaching a certain spending target regardless of the items you purchase.
They also have a very low payout requirement of $5 that can be sent electronically or with a paper check.
Coupons.com has an app where you can link coupons to your grocery store loyalty card. A second option is to print paper coupons that will give you instant savings at the checkout lane if you don’t want to wait several weeks to get your cash reward mailed to you or deposited electronically.
They also have a coupon codes section for several leading retailers including Amazon, Best Buy, and Shutterfly to save money online as well.
6. Shopkick App
Shopkick is an app available for iOS and Andriod devices that isn’t your typical coupon app. In fact, it’s different from most of the apps listed in this article because you can earn points just for visiting a purchase.
You will need to use your smartphone with this app and enable your Bluetooth location services. Shopkick awards your reward points called “kicks” that you can earn by visiting a store, scanning item barcodes, and making purchases. That’s three different ways to earn kicks.
You can earn points by visiting grocery stores and retail stores. For example, you can earn 100 kicks just by walking through the front door of your favorite electronics store. When it comes to redeeming your kick points, they are exchanged for store gift cards.
If you want instant cash rewards deposited to your PayPal account, try MobiSave. Cash rewards are deposited within 24 hours of submitting your receipt. Like the other coupon apps, you do have to activate the offers before checking out.
MobiSave works at any grocery store that provides an itemized receipt to show you bought bacon (any brand) to save 10 cents or a specific brand of shampoo to save $1.
8. Smart Source
Now you can cancel your newspaper subscription as Smart Source, possibly the largest weekly coupon circular, has their coupons online as well. You can filter coupons by product category or brand name.
It’s also possible to find local offers by entering your zip code.
Smart Source offers printable coupons and “Direct2Card” electronic coupons that upload to your store loyalty cards.
9. Red Plum
Red Plum is the other coupon circular you receive in your local newspaper on a routine basis. You can print or download coupons and find local offers to non-grocery retailers too. They also have a recipes section that can give you some cooking ideas to help maximize the value of the coupons you might choose to use.
RetailMeNot provides 500,000+ coupon codes to 50,000 stores. If you can’t find a discount code here, it probably doesn’t exist. When looking for coupon codes, you can enter the store name into the search bar or browse their exclusive offers and trending offers sections to find time-sensitive deals. To view a discount code, you have to click the “Show Code” button and the code will be uncovered.
An indirect way to couponing is buying discounted gift cards. RetailMeNot sells gift cards for 1% up to 25% off the regular price. In some instances, this is actually a better deal than clipping coupons in terms of money and time.
The gift card inventory & discount rates are always changing so it pays to check back often if you don’t find the exact gift card amount you are looking for today.
11. Grocery iQ
Grocery iQ is more than just a coupon app, you can also make shopping lists to ensure to you don’t buy an unnecessary item just because you have a coupon for it.
The list option they provide can help make sure you find coupons for as many grocery items as possible as Grocery iQ will recommend items & even save previous coupons you have used.
Most grocery customer loyalty programs are supported by this app. Coupons can be delivered electronically or printed at home. You can even synchronize your lists to be accessed from multiple devices.
12. Coupon Sherpa
Coupon Sherpa is the original mobile coupon app for in-store purchases. It allows you to print coupons, download scannable digital coupons, and find coupons based on your proximity to nearby stores. For digital coupons, all you need to do is show the barcode to the cashier and they will scan it. It’s like when your favorite store e-mails you a coupon & you bring up the e-mail on your smartphone to get the savings.
You can find grocery & retail coupons with Coupon Sherpa. That flexibility makes this a pretty flexible along with the fact that the savings are instant.
To save money on experiences and visiting restaurants, you should check Groupon first for local deals. Groupon says you can save up to 70% on select deals and first-time users can get an additional discount for their first purchase (currently 25% off).
You can save some additional money at Groupon by visiting the site through Ebates coupon app (also recommended on this list) that also offers a cash back discount.
In addition to finding local deals, Groupon can help you save money on vacation activities across the globe and they also have a “Coupons” section to save money at multiple retailers with coupon codes too.
14. Living Social
If you liked Groupon, you can also give Living Social a try. It’s another great site to save up to 80% off on local attractions and events. Their selection is a little different than Groupon, for example, you can buy online merchandise at Living Social but can’t buy restaurant gift certificates.
Like Groupon, they also have a coupon codes section to save money at many online stores.
15. Walmart Savings Catcher
Just about every town has a Walmart and you can save money with the Walmart Savings Catcher app for in-store purchases. Simply scan the bar-code at the bottom of your store receipt within 7 days and Walmart will compare the prices you paid to those offered by other local stores. If they overcharged you, you get the difference back as a cash reward.
The savings only qualifies for most packaged groceries, paper products, and health & beauty items. If you use a coupon, Walmart will still credit you the difference from their regular price the competitor’s price. You can load the cash rewards on a Walmart gift card or Bluebird American Express card.
16. Target App
Target’s app offers hundreds of daily offers and coupons. It is more similar to the other coupons apps listed where you need to activate the offers before you checkout to save 5% to 50% on discounted items. After all, items have been scanned by the cashier, they need to scan the bar-code from the Target app to get the additional savings.
17. Amazon Coupons
While a few of the apps mentioned here will automatically enter all Amazon coupons into your cart at checkout, sometimes you want to browse the specials before you shop. Amazon Coupons lets you look at all the current offers from every shopping category.
As with certain products on the Amazon website, they are only available to Amazon Prime members. That holds true with select coupons too.
SnipSnap is a coupon app that allows you to activate offers from stores or scan the bar-codes of paper coupons to store them electronically. When you are ready to checkout, you have the cashier scan the digital bar-code and accrue the savings at the register.
Another feature of SnipSnap is showing specials based on your current location. The app will display pinpoints of retailers and their specials. As you walk across the mall or drive to a different shopping center, a new set of coupons will display from the stores closest to you.
Yipit helps you find the best daily deals and coupons. They will send you a daily newsletter for the best deals in your city. While Yipit has a large selection of cities to choose from, you will need to see if they provide deals for your metropolitan area. If you live in one of the cities they serve, you might use this as an alternative to Groupon or Living Social.
You can also get online coupons from Yipit. They scour several online coupon databases like Ebates, RetailMeNot, Coupons.com, etc. to find all the different discount codes. Yipit will also tell you what other apps have the same codes and if it worked for Yipit when they tried entering it.
You can still save money by clipping coupons from the newspaper and the mail. However, using coupon apps makes saving money a lot easier and quicker. Plus, all these apps are free to use.
All you need is a smartphone to get started and you can start saving the next time you visit your favorite grocery store or department store.
Have you used any of these apps? Let me know what you like and don’t like about them in the comments below.